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Undertsanding a PLN to Build a Strong Learning Community

Almost never we talk about what Twitter means in our daily life. This is due to the short periods of time we have to spend online and where we have the great opportunity to talk and share about common interests with other professionals in education.

PLN DefinitionThe first thing we need to understand is what a Personal Learning Network(PLN) means? I think the concept not only applies to professionals but it can be used among students in a personal level, too. But this is not the topic. Tom Whitby has been doing a great job helping educators to create and develop their own PLN. His definition is quite clear as what it is to be understood by PLN.

Dr. Alec Couros already made a first approach trying to laid a definition of Personal Learning Networks, also known as PLE. He found difficult to establish a "solid reference or definition for the concept of PLN". An he is not alone. Scott S. Floyd, has set his own definition, as well, but he thinks that "If you only plan to follow along and not participate, you will never expand your own learning." A community does not grow if the answer we receive is always passive: Yes man, no 'mam!

The concept based on the "set of practices and techniques aimed at attracting and organizing of relevant content sources" as David Warlick says, can be only accomplished following the advice Scott gave us in his post Passive Learning Stinks:

    1. Have the right idea about friendship. Know that true friends are honest regardless of whether they agree or disagree.
    2. Be sure you see the reality of the process of a community. Get the true value out of it... You can learn and grow during both.
    3. You have to move beyond the superficial. In other words, who cares who your friend is or what his/her title/ranking/popularity/Tweet ranking/etc really is... Moving deeper into the relationship is what helps build trust. It puts the conversation and expectation of input at a level that you both can grow from.
I want to be part of your network an I promise I wouldn't be the passive man we talk before. Add me to your PLN, I go by @tonnet, and let's have a deep conversation on the matter most interest you.

Also recommended:

- Origins of the Personal Learning Network
- My Personal Learning in Action.
- The Power of the Personal Learning Network
- 5 Things You Can Do to Begin Developing Your Personal Learning Network

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